In this file photo, Evan Serrato of Tyler, rides his bike in front of his dad, Zibeon Serrato, on the Legacy Trails.

A new grant and matching aid of over $3.5 million will allow residents to walk, hike or bike trails in Tyler from the south to the north and even attend events at Rose Stadium and the Tyler Rose Garden without having to drive.

The public had a chance to see the Legacy Trails extension plans on Tuesday during an open house at the Tyler Development Center.

“It will go through some great city parks and gives kids an easy way to get to the school (Peete Elementary) and easier access to the Rose Garden, Rose Stadium and Mike Carter field,” said Michael Howell, manager for the Metropolitan Planning Organization. “You don’t have to get in a car, you can go all the way from south Tyler to north Tyler.”

Howell talked about the trail going through Winters Park, Stewart Park, the entire Rose Garden Complex, Earl Campbell Parkway, Old Jacksonville Highway and the Rose Redmond Trail.

While the cost is $3.5 million, Tyler was awarded a $2.8 million grant through the Texas Department of Transportation Set-Aside Program for the Legacy Trails extension. That grant provides 80% of the funding and the city’s Half Cent Sales Tax Fund will provide the other 20% of $713,364.

Howell said the 1.7-mile shared-use path includes a half-mile of sidewalks that will connect the Rose Garden Complex to Stewart Park. He said there will also be new right-of-ways.

Tuesday’s open house was the first of a 30-day public comment period that is a project requirement by the state when a grant is being awarded.

City officials said the proposed amendments will be considered for adoption by the MPO’s Transportation Policy Committee on July 22.

To submit a question or comment, call the MPO at (903) 531-1175 option 5.


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John is a two-time national columnist of the year and AP award-winner in Texas and New York for breaking news, videos and sports. He earned the Thomas J. Bulson Investigative Journalism award and has appeared on CNBC's American Greed, FOX and CNN.